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Description - The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon by Tom Spanbauer

Shed is a half-breed bisexual boy who earns his keep at Ida Richilieu's outrageously pink whorehouse in the tiny turn- of- the- century town of Excellent, Idaho. Leaving behind the nights of drinking, talking and smoking opium stardust with his eccentric family, Shed sets off alone in search of the meaning of his Indian name and in search of himself. Along the way he falls in love with Dellwood Barker, a man who talks to the moon and who may be Shed's father. But it is not until Shed is back in Excellent and Isa has lost her legs and Dellwood his mind, that he attains the wisdom for which he is searching.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780749395674
ISBN-10: 0749395672
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 24mm)
Pages: 416
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 12-Feb-1996
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Book Reviews - The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon by Tom Spanbauer

US Kirkus Review » Gender and racial lines are bent out of shape in this tale of turn-of-the-century Idaho spun by a youth who is part Indian, not quite wholly homosexual, and in the grip of a powerful imagination. Spanbauer (Faraway Places, 1988) creates a pansexual West that John Wayne wouldn't have recognized. The narrator, brought up in an earthy but idealized whorehouse in the small town of Excellent, is called "Shed," because it's out in the shed where he turns his tricks - from about age 12 on - after his full-blooded-Indian mother is murdered. He also has the Indian name of Duivichi-un-Dua, the meaning of which he seeks to discover. He feels some kinship to the Berdache, male Indians who lived as women before the uptight whites put a stop to it. In Excellent, the enemies of erotic and other pleasures are the patriarchal Mormons, who are pictured as rabidly racist as well. Meanwhile, the narrative voice, at its worst, is false naive; at its best, strong and vivid, creating an oddly convincing world as seen by someone on locoweed and whiskey. Shed forms a family with Ida Richelieu, the whorehouse proprietor and a whore herself; Alma Hatch, Ida's colleague and bedmate; and cowboy Dellwood Barker, who may be Shed's father but is most certainly his lover. Freud would have had a field day. The 384 pages offer plenty of plot twists, humor, graphic but not prurient sex, didacticisms, some magic realism (North American-style) and a consistent view of life that might be termed "rebellious romanticism" for the 1990's. A different view of the West where the bisexuals and prostitutes wear the white hats, gender is up for grabs, and every permutation of love will have its way. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Tom Spanbauer

Tom Spanbauer is the author of three previous novels, Far Away Places, The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon and In the City of Shy Hunters. He lives in Portland, Oregon, where he writes and teaches 'Dangerous Writing' classes. His former students include Chuck Palahniuk.

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